Researchers and officials interested in people’s attitudes toward risk when designing public policies should make sure that their questions about risk are asked in the specific context of the policy rather than in general abstract questions.
Although field experimental methods are the workhorse of researchers interested in risk preferences, practitioners find surveys easier to implement. We compare results from experimental versus survey-based methods to elicit farmers’ risk attitudes, in both general settings and specific contexts. Our results indicate that one should be careful in thinking that a risk attitude in one context will be the same in a different context.
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